The pithead tower at Hannover Colliery stands out like a medieval fortress against the horizon of north Bochum. At the time it was built, contemporaries were amazed by the defiant design. Its most splendid exhibit is the steam hauling engine, built in 1893, which stands inside the engine house. In 1973 the Hannover Colliery, the last working mine in Bochum, closed its operations forever.

For some years now culture, not coal, has been produced at the Hannover Colliery. Temporary exhibitions and events are a huge attraction at the industrial museum during the summer months. 

The team of fieldworkers in Bochum



Focus on migration

The LWL-Industriemuseum Zeche Hannover is an impressive testimony to the development of the Ruhr area. It is representative of the profound changes in the living and working conditions of the people in the area. Migration played an important role in this. The location focuses on this topic with exhibitions, campaigns and cooperations.


Since its beginnings in the 1850s, Hannover colliery has been attracting workers from Germany and abroad. In addition to their usually only provisional luggage, the immigrants transported another important commodity to the emerging conurbation: their culture. They thus enrich life on the Rhine and Ruhr to this day. The interrelationships and influences of the different cultures can be traced in all areas of society.


The Internet portal brings together the most important migration exhibitions in one place and serves as an archive for smaller presentations.


With Specially Unknown EU, the LWL wants to expand its collection and network and, at the same time, contribute to enriching the migration heritage of the region.


The project is accepted as a contribution to the European Year of Cultural Heritage:



Specially Unknown Team Bochum


Dietmar Osses (Local Project Coordinator / Director LWL-Industriemuseum Zeche Hanover)


Tel: +49 231 6961231


Katarzyna Nogueira (Oral history trainer / Historian)


Tel: +49 1578 0647971


Fieldworkers Team Bochum


Sera Massakidi (Congo)

Sera is the founder and chairman of the association Bosangani e.V. in Bochum. The association works with African refugees, Primarily from the Democratic Republic of Congo by supporting their educational and cultural integration.

Languages: German, French and Lingala


Agir Mustafa Birhîmeoglu (Turkey)

Agir Mustafa works for IFAK e.V., a transnational migrant organisation in Bochum. There, his work concentrates on the project Samofa with the aim to promote the social participation of people with a migration background.

Languages: German, Turkish and Kurdish (Kurmandschi)


Zoubeida Khodr (Syria)

Zoubeida is the founder and chairwoman of the association Humanitäre Solidarität Middle East, HSME e.V. (Humanitarian Solidarity Middle East), that has the aim to improve the mutual understanding and coexistence of the different cultures living in Bochum.

Languages: German, French, Arab.


Alpha O. Barry (Guinea)

Alpha is a member of the executive board at the association Guinee-Coop e.V. that focuses on the educational integration of Guinean people living in Bochum and the Ruhr area. He is also the founder of the translation agency Linect – African Languages.

Languages: German, French, Fulani



Participating refugee communities

The LWL-museum decided to interview Third country nationals with a refugee background from the following communities:

  • Congo: Even though the Congolese refugees build a rather less familiar group, its community is relatively active in the cultural scene of Bochum. The Congolese refugees fleed from ethnic and religious conflicts, poverty and violence.
  • Turkey: Germany and Turkey have a long history together. Today there are approximately three million people with a Turkish background living in Germany. Most Turkish immigrants came as a migrant worker. Some of them came as asylum seekers during the last decades. Even today, a small number of Turkish people are asking for asylum in Germany.
  • Syria: Since the beginning of the new immigration wave in 2015 Syria was the country with the highest number of people fleeing from civil war or persecution. The community of Syrian refugees is highly present in the German media. In Bochum, the Syrian community is one of the largest refugee groups and highly visible in the city.
  • Guinea: Compared to the people coming from Syria or Turkey, the Guinean refugees are less visible in the city of Bochum. They build a relatively small community that grew bigger in the last years as many people fled poverty and violence. In many cities of the Ruhr, most underaged and unaccompanied refugees are coming from Guinea.


Westfälisches Landesmuseum für Industriekultur
Zeche Hannover
Günnigfelder Straße 251
44793 Bochum

Tel: +49 (0) 234 6100-874